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Bad Behavior by Mary Gaitskill – A trade paperback reissue of National Book Award finalist Mary Gaitskill’s debut collection, Bad Behavior—powerful stories. This collection of nine stories by Avery Hopwood Award-winner Gaitskill marks the debut of a promising and provocative new voice. These are tales of sexual. Mary Gaitskill (born November 11, ) is an American novelist, essayist, and short story Gaitskill attempted to find a publisher for four years before her first book, the short story collection Bad Behavior, was published in The first four.

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Gaitskill’s fiction is typically about female characters dealing with their own inner conflicts, and her subject matter matter-of-factly includes many “taboo” subjects such as prostitutionaddictionand sado-masochism.

Bad Behavior

The letters were full of triple exclamation points, crazy dashes or dots instead of periods, violently underlined words and huge swirling capital letters with tails fanning across several lines.

And “radial gradations of tenderness” – could be talking about the fine qualities behaviorr a steak just purchased from the butcher. To see what your friends brhavior of this book, please sign up. I skipped dating, the awkwardness of that first sex, and went straight to love.

This collection of stories is difficult to pin down effectively enough to give a rating to. View all 5 comments. I was, after all, working at a fashion magazine. She describes ways that individual subjectivity influences all experiences, making it impossible to come to “universally agreed-upon conclusions.

I think the only story that she’s ever written …more I read it when I was 14, and it was way too adult for me. But there’s also this plot I’d forgotten, about Virginia’s mousy sister Ann, and Ann’s troubled teenage daughter. For the uninitiated, the hate-read, which is analogous behaavior its more ubiquitous and slutty cousin, the hate-fuck, is an activity wherein one disseminates written content with the behacior objective of deriding it. The film Secretary is based on the short story of the same name in Bad Behavioralthough the two have little in common.

I have always preferred wine over beer. In spite of the eclecticism, I felt a thrill at discovering each entry, which felt like time capsules from the late 20th century, bottled wi My introduction to the fiction of Mary Gaitskill is Bad Behavior: Her characters are human beings capable of tenderness as well as frightening self-absorption, even when relentlessly seeking out their own fulfillment and pleasure.


Eventually she quits and returns, somewhat worsened, to the life she had before. He had met her at a party during the previous week. I feel like she would then act all offended at the prudishness of the person sitting with her and the people sitting around her that were now giving her weird looks.

While her despondency borders on the dramatic, the emotion behind it is relatable. Maybe my capsule memory of the story wasn’t so far off, after all. There’s also amry extended visit from Virginia’s teenage niece, who has just gotten out of a mental hospital, and whom her mother Ann says she can’t handle anymore.

The stories do shock you, but Gaitskill allows the characters and their dingy, drug-filled, sexually unfulfilled, disenchanted lives and thoughts to do that rather than hitting you in the face with what could have been far more shocking details and language. If you want to read a collection of stories about some pretty effed up people who might seem on the behhavior to be perfectly in control of their lives and children and careers, read this.

I love the strong, defiant sense of life. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

In short, she’s kind of an unusual POV character for fiction, and I love that. They are sometimes victims.

She said, “I hope you are a savage. Was it a quality that other people had? Although I am not a woman, most of my past friendships have been with women, and I find myself obsessing over the loss of these friendships or betrayal or disappointment within these friendships in very simi I still have a story and a behavio to finish, but I feel ready to jot a quick review.

Why do the Johns in these stories frequent prostitutes? Here the sense of dissociation and coldness worked much better for me because I also could detect genuine feeling between the characters.

Each tries in their varied and interesting to ways to splice wires back together, to make meaningful connections within themselves and with others. I still have a story and a half to finish, but I feel ready to jot a quick review. Books by Mary Gaitskill.

To ask other readers questions about Bad Behaviorplease sign up. Please provide an email address. Deeply sensitive and emotionally burdened people, their surfaces and interiors never synch up, not with themselves and not with anybody else in the room.


Gaitskill says that she had worked as a stripper and call girl. But calling it vanity seems cheapening, too. I was very moved by “Heaven,” and I feel it could also be made into a feature film. It was a bizarre world but one I felt it behaivor to drag myself away from. In a conversation with novelist and short story writer Matthew Sharpe for BOMB MagazineGaitskill said she chose to become a writer at age 18 because she was “indignant about things—it was the typical teenage sense of ‘things are wrong in the world and I must say gsitskill.

BAD BEHAVIOR: Stories by Mary Gaitskill | Kirkus Reviews

OK, not really, but for once I wanted to be wrong. Wikiquote has quotations related to: She characterized the film as mar Pretty Woman version, heavy on the charm and a little too nice ,” but observed that the “bottom line is that if [a film adaptation is] made you get some money and exposure, and people can make up their minds from there. Mary Gaitskill’s Debut Collection Turns I found them astonishing. Not even the shreds of gratification received from hate-reading could save this.

It’s not just that there is quite a bit of sex and kinks mentioned in her stories, but that it seems like it’s mentioned too often as if to be provocative.

That knife-edge turn of perspective! The stories here are more refreshing than say stories about sad twenty eight year old men who are slacking their way to be recognized as the geniuses they’ve been promised their whole lives that they really are, but being more appealing than that genre isn’t necessarily that difficult. Gaitskilk thought this book was profound, intriguing, and original in the choice of subject matter. Chrissy is completely flabbergasted about why her friend would turn to such work to which her friend responds: I have to say that I am behaivor to have enjoyed this collection as much as I did.